'Israel, Palestinians source of ME instability'

Jordan's King Abdullah II told visiting Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan Sunday that the Palestinian-Israeli conflict was the main source of regional instability. "The Palestinian issue is the core of the Mideast conflict and keeping it unresolved is the main cause of instability and conflict in the region," said Jordan's ruler, King Abdullah II, a staunch US ally who advocates a peaceful settlement to the lingering Arab-Israeli conflict. Abdullah said an Arab peace plan, which envisages an independent Palestinian state living in peace next to Israel, "provides an appropriate framework for ending the Arab-Israeli conflict." His remarks came in a closed-door meeting with Erdogan in Jordan's capital of Amman, which will host US President George W. Bush and Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki Wednesday and Thursday for talks on expected to focus on stemming the violence and progress made on transferring security responsibilities to Iraqi forces. Abdullah and Erdogan also discussed the situation in Iraq, according to Jordan's official Petra news agency. It said Abdullah reiterated the "need for cooperation among Iraq's neighbors to help that country overcome its crises." It did not elaborate. Erdogan, who arrived here Friday for a three-day state visit, warned Saturday that dividing Iraq would spur a civil war and said he gave "great importance" to Bush's upcoming meeting with al-Maliki.